Giving a pet for Easter? Don't do it

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(Gray News) – The animal welfare folks say to think twice before giving a bunny, chick or duck to a child in your life for Easter.

They’re adorable, fluffy and cuddly on Easter morning, but then there’s the reality of the days and weeks to come.

Sure, they're adorable, fluffy and cuddly, plus they're a big hit on the holiday. But then there's the reality of the days and weeks to come.

The Center for Pet Safety (CPS) never recommends giving a pet as a gift.

"Bunnies make wonderful pets, but we suggest restraint from the impulse buy of baby bunnies at Easter. The same goes for baby chicks and ducks," the group said.

"Every year rescue agencies are inundated with bunnies, chicks and ducks once the novelty wears off - and the responsibility of pet ownership sets in."

The truth is these baby animals may be cute, but they're also fragile and easily injured, according to the CPS. Bunnies, chicks and ducks don't hold up to cuddling nearly as well as puppies or kittens.

Abi Cushman with the My House Rabbit website agrees.

"They're not as 'huggable' as people imagine," she said. "They don't always like being held, and in fact, many times they will try to bolt out of a person's arms, scratching the person and possibly inflicting serious injury to themselves."

While rabbits can make good house pets, they require lots of special attention and potential owners should do a lot of homework first, which is why they're not a good holiday gift to spring on someone.

Chickens and ducks are a different story, according to the CPS. They should never be house pets and require special housing.

"Every poultry premises must register with the Department of Agriculture to ensure adequate disease control in the case of an outbreak," the CPS said. They're trying to prevent the spread of things like avian flu and salmonella.

Maybe this Easter, it's better to stick with the Peeps variety of bunnies and chicks.

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